Five months after notifying the rules for the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, the Haryana government has so far registered 393 projects out of the 646 applications received, a senior state government official said. “Of the 393 projects registered, around 246 are in Gurugram,” the official said. Meanwhile, Maharashtra has registered around 14,000 projects across the state under RERA. Though the Haryana government has appointed two authorities — one each in Gurgaon and Panchkula — it is yet to create an online portal. “We may be able to come up with some kind of portal by January 15,” the official said. The Haryana RERA has registered 660 real estate agents, while the applications of 44 agents are still pending, the official said. The state government has been facing severe criticism from homebuyers for “diluting the central law by changing the definition of ongoing projects”, leaving almost 90% of the city’s residential projects outside the purview of the act.
The state has allowed a builder to be exempt from the purview of RERA even if he had applied for a licence, or received a part completion certificate, before the Act is notified. It implies builders who do not complete projects and leave homebuyers in the lurch cannot be penalised under RERA guidelines. By exempting projects for which an application for completion or occupation certificate (CC/OC) has been made on or before the rules are notified, Haryana has taken a lenient attitude towards builders. Earlier this month, in a victory for homebuyers, the Bombay High Court upheld the constitutional validity of the RERA and its applicability to ongoing projects across states. The order has come as a blow for the Haryana government. The state government is now ‘examining’ the Bombay High Court’s judgment on the constitutional validity of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act. “Right now we are examining the judgment. We may be able to say about any changes in the Haryana RERA in around 7-10 days,” the official said. The central government has already warned states against diluting the rules of RERA and has said that dilution of the Act may attract legal challenge. After the Bombay High Court ruling, minister of housing and urban affairs Hardeep Singh Puri had said that state governments will now have no scope to loosen the regulation by either keeping ongoing projects out of RERA or defining them in their own convenient ways. “They (states which have diluted the law) will have to comply. I have already taken it up with them,” Puri observed.